Who is Sara A. Crawford?
Hype Fashion: Who is Sara A. Crawford?
Who is Sara A. Crawford?
"Fashion is a hobby for some, for me it’s my lifestyle." Words from a true fashionista, Sara A. Crawford the founder of Anara Original. Alone she takes the division of urban couture to a new level and provides this outlet of fashion a unique platform that stands behind social causes while exhibiting fashion with a message. Some people see her as highly determined for completing her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Fashion Design and Marketing in only three years from the International Academy of Design and Technology. Others see her as an inspiration for overcoming being slightly visually impaired as a result of being an albino African American. Through her various contributions to organizations such as The Diabetes Association and The Division for the Visually Impaired, some will say she fits the demeanor of a modern day philanthropist. Sara is truly all of the above and more. Her story is inspiring and the fashion industry has allowed her to showcase her work to her peers young and old, delivering the message that despite any disability everyone has the capability to accomplish anything
Formerly working with brands such as Tommy Hilfiger, DDC Lab and H&M, Sara was inspired to create Anara Original as an extension of herself. The brand name derives from her first name (Sara) and middle name (Ann). As a fashion designer she is someone who has an eye for taking something plain and turning it into something not so ordinary. She loves the concept of “adding”. As an entrepreneur in the fashion industry Sara Crawford stands out by conveying the idea that is fashion “wearable art”. She enjoys participating in various organizations because she can relate to the causes that they stand for. In 2011she created an extension of her line, “ The elements of natural fiber”. Inspired by the unfortunate natural disasters that occurred such as the Tsunami in Japan. This line is ECO-friendly, hence the concept of fashion with a message. Sara's story is one that presents strength, something she reveals as a core element to navigating life.
Who is Sara A. Crawford?
I am an Albino African American clothing & jewelry designer. I am a business owner and creative mind. Most importantly, I am a young, 20 something year old, loving life and the lessons learned, and in the industry I chose as my career, "fashion".
When did you realize you wanted to become a fashion designer?
I always loved dressing barbie dolls and making them look cute in their outfits, but it wasn't until I was about 11 or 12 years old when I hands down knew I wanted to be a designer. I can remember, in class, passing paper to my cousin to draw figures and I would draw the clothes. I always say, " I wanted to wake up and be happy about what I was doing with my life." and what made me happy was fashion. I must say having a mother who sewed in her spare time and having a father who drew and sketched so well prepared me greatly for this journey I chose.
Where do you get your inspiration today?
Everything! I know that's such a broad answer but I'm so literal about it! Everything from life, to art, to visual display, to a walk in the park can inspire an idea or creation! When my mom, Gladys, recently passed, I was inspired to use some of the vintage clothing and mix it with my button ring and brooch collection for an awesome photo shoot! I called it the Glady’s Llyod limited edition collection! Beautiful flowers, even dead flowers inspired me! I am very inspired but vintage everything, pop, and modern art inspire me a lot. Most of all I am inspired by love and blessings. I have been so blessed in so many ways that it drives me and my creations to only be the best!
Who were some of your major influences in the beginning of your dream?
My mother (who could sew) and my father (who could draw) influenced me the most in the early years. They both owned their own businesses as well so I had the perfect background to do the same! Going forward I was inspired by celebrity stylist June Ambrose whom still inspires me daily! She rocks! Dreams can become a reality, staying focused and working hard gets you the end results!
What does fashion mean to you?
It's simple Art, creative, innovative, and Free; Fashion is simply expressing who you are through 3 dimensional art, "clothing". I try and invoke these same feelings in each of Anara Original, my pieces. Fashion is, so I am, it may be difficult , but it's all mine and I love it!
What are some of your accomplishments with Anara Original?
I love fashion hands down without a doubt and the most rewarding part is that I am able to live my dreams and be a part of this industry daily! It is the best feeling that I wake up and know I am able to do what I love!
What is the best perk of being a designer?
I would say for me being a designer my perk is being able to get away with any style choice. People always seem to expect for you to look like you're off the pages of Vogue. I just wear what I feel and if I wasn't a designer, I don't think I could get away with it! I can't forget receiving invites to fashion events and fashion shows!(smiles)
What made you choose custom rings?
I began and still have a clothing collection. My grandmother left me a box with button and fabrics to use! The buttons were beautiful and vintage! A light bulb went off and I began experimenting with the idea of button rings! I personally love accessories, they can turn anything plain into something great so this concept seemed very simple to me.
How would you define your city's fashion?
I am from the first state, Delaware; this isn't the most fashion forward state by far, but we do have some "fashionistas" floating around. Overall I would say most follow the current trends or what they believe to be "HOT" on tv!
What was the first ring you created?
One of the first rings I created was made of vintage buttons and accented with peasant feathers! The bands weren't adjustable metals like now, they were made of elastic; these were only prototypes. Within a few short months I figured out a better way!
Who are some of your favorite designers?
Some of my "favs"' are classic; Donna Karen, funky Betsy Johnson, show stopping Heatherette, and breathtaking Alexander McQueen! I have several others but these stand out the most.
What do you wish people would understand about branding yourself in the fashion industry?
Again I must say the fashion industry is difficult but you must stay current and consistent with your branding! Everything should be cohesive, evoking the image of the brand. Most importantly because there are so many brands indie and established, your brand must have something that stands out from the others; this is branding! Creating your on lane!
What one piece of advice would you give to someone wanting to start a custom ring line?
Creating a custom line of jewelry, clothing, or anything for that matter isn't an easy path traveled. It takes hard work but more so consistency and determination. Research and know your business inside and out. Success doesn't happen overnight, so when you don't think you can do anymore, "Do More"!
What trends do you see being big next season?
Next season, some of the same trends will be reoccurring; lace, florets, brights, and color blocking! Spring /Summer season will be beautiful and accessorized with stacked bangles and colorful clutches!
Is there anything you would like our readers to know?
Anara Original is the place where fashion and art meet, where we transform the one dimensional into 3 dimensional, where dreams are realities! We love fashion and style but we love the great causes we are able to help and the people we are able to encourage. We just want to encourage people to keep their eyes on the brand and to feel free to visit us anytime at www.anaraoriginal.com
Last but not least, HYPE wants to know…What’s your CRAZIEST “Where they do that at?!” moment…
I was having a fashion show, waiting for the hairstylist for hours and she never shows, yet she texts and said she is on her way! The next day she begins texting me. After a few hours she calls and leaves a message. The message made no sense; " I'm so sorry about yesterday I was on my way and my phone died and I didn't have my charger." Hmmmm, where they do that at?